Thursday, June 30, 2011

Going Simple ... and Other Good Advice from Friends

     What to do with those obnoxiously cute candid shots where the kids are bedecked in every color of clothing possible all at once? "Use this paper," my dear scrapbooking cohort Melinda says as she pulls out a perfectly coordinated sheet from her stash and hands it to me. Some people just have the eye, don't they? Melinda is hands-down the most efficient scrapbooker I know, and it's pretty obvious why. She just gets color.

     I found it really challenging to leave this page alone and let the multi-colored and adorable pattern come through, but a little simplicity never hurts, especially when it's out of our comfort zones.

     Thanks, Melinda, for the perfect piece of paper!

Materials used:
Patterned paper: Crate Paper, Stampin' Up (Play Date), October Afternoon (Thrift Store)
Sticker: Cosmo Cricket (Early Bird)
Bumblebee button: Joann Fabrics
Paper Flowers, Olive Green Felt, Sewing Machine :)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

What Not to Buy a Teacher ... Or So I've Heard

     Plants. Christmas and desk ornaments. Coffee mugs that read "World's Best Teacher." What do these items have in common?

     I have it on good authority that they're all gifts that make teachers groan. I know they would never groan out loud or admit that they're less than 100% grateful for the effort (which they are.) But, there are some things you can just have too many of, as delightful as coffee mugs can be.

     Did you know that the average teacher spends hundreds of dollars out of their already small salary every year on books and supplies to educate our kids? If you thought all those group projects and science experiments were paid for by schools with limited budgets, you'd be mistaken.

    Gift certificates for classroom books, grocery stores, stores that carry school supplies, or the cash that we spent on the aforementioned coffee mug would be much more welcome and useful to the teachers I know. This year the girls and I made what we hope won't be a gift that elicits a groan ... a stationary set that holds a gift certificate to a local bookstore and some little thank you cards she can send to all the plant-givers.

     And, of course, the best gift a teacher can get is to know that their hard work and dedication is greatly appreciated all year long.

Strength and Hope Card Class

     Anytime I have the pleasure of getting together with "my girls," the weekend is bound to be a good one! Our Strength and Hope card class was so much fun, and even though I was totally not in "teacher" mode for some reason and the girls had to infer a lot of steps, they did a fabulous job! Thankfully, I have wonderful friends who are also experienced crafters so we can just let our hair down and have a good time!

     Cassandra's set turned out so beautifully! Great job, my photogenic friend!

     It was so wonderful to have Erika with us! I love how she always puts her own creative touch on whatever project we're working on.

     And my sweet sister, Gia, just radiates her wonderful spirit wherever she goes! How lucky am I to be related to a totally cool person like that?

Thanks, ladies, for the fun, friendly conversation, and all the support you've given me over the course of these last challenging years. You've made all the difference!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

A Place of Your Own

     I'll admit that I'm not always good at capturing everyday photos. Because I love to scrap portraits, I sometimes forget that the pictures of what goes on in our odd household on a daily basis makes for great scrapping!

    This picture cracks me up every time I see it, and the little details of Sophia's cardboard design (complete with all those misspelled words) will be a great memory in years to come. I thought this page begged for a corrugated cardboard accent too!

     I'm resolving here and now to remember to take pictures of the little joys that make life so special. Hold me to it, scrapping friends!

Materials used:
Paper: Stampin' Up "Play Date" and Chocolate Chip Card Stock, Cosmo Cricket "Early Bird" and "Garden Variety"
Accents: Cosmo Cricket, October Afternoon, Thickers, Paper Clip, and Scrap Cardboard, Vintage Brad
Ribbon: Maya Road, Joann Fabrics
Tools: Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher, Dimensionals, Micron Pen, Paper Piercer, Basic Black Classic Ink

Friday, June 10, 2011

CPS 221 Up, Up and Away Birthday

     A note to my dear friend Kristii:

             Dearest Kristii, you must stop doing this to me. Every time I think I have everything I need for my craft room, you show me how much more fun it can all be by introducing me to something new and absolutely fabulous, like Paper Trey Ink stamps.  You know I'm a sucker for fun stuff, and, being a relatively new paper crafter, it's easy to get sucked into the latest and greatest thing that might come along. I know you don't mean to do it, but you're really becoming a bad* influence on me.

     You also introduced me to Card Positioning Systems, which I am now addicted to after following a link from your blog. Here's the sketch this week:

   So, you can see this is becoming a dependency I can't control. What will be next? I look forward to whatever comes with check book in hand and an expression of grim determination.


Your Dear Friend Jessica :)

*P.S. By "bad" I mean "good and cool" (the 80's usage via the King of Pop.) I'm sure you understand.

Materials used: Basic Black Cardstock, Stampin' Up; Thrift Store patterned paper, October Afternoon; Very Vanilla Cardstock, Stampin' Up; Up, Up and Away Stamp Set, Paper Trey Ink; Baja Breeze, Chocolate Chip, and Basic Black Classic Ink, Stampin' Up; Lots of Tags Die, Stampin' Up; corner rounder punch; linen thread

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Ink Resist Paper

     I love the ink resist technique for making custom backgrounds, and I was so excited to play around with this Parisian Anthology House of Three ink resist paper from Pink Paislee! You never know quite how combinations of colors are going to look, and I went darker on this page than I was picturing in my mind. I like how it turned out anyway! I think the darker colors set off the black and white photo very nicely.

     My absolute favorite scrapbooking element of all time has to be Pink Paislee's artisan elements. I think they designed them just for me! I sponge painted these with navy blue and black acrylic paint and then stamped on them. 

     This photo was large, so the background wouldn't fit inside my favorite embossing folder the way I'd hoped, so a crafty compromise was in order. I embossed my Rich Razzleberry mat multiple times in overlapping sections, and I love how it turned out! The paper looked like leather when I was finished!

Hope you're having a scrap-happy week!! Thanks for stopping by!

Materials used: 

Paper: Parisian Anthology House of Three ink resist paper, Life's a Portrait - Webster's pages (border), Rich Razzleberry and Basic Black Cardstock - Stampin' Up
Stamps: Joann Crafts
Ink: Not Quite Navy, Tempting Turquoise, Rich Razzleberry, Basic Gray, and Basic Black - Stampin' Up, Staz-on
Embellies: Artisan Elements - Pink Paislee, Monogram Transparency - 7 Gypsies, Floral Pick - Webster's pages, Sticker - Creative Imaginations, Pearls, paper doily - Michael's
Other: Old songbook page, acrylic paint, Seam Binding - Webster's, Vintage Wallpaper Embossing Folder - Stampin' Up

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Strength and Hope Card Class

   Unfortunately, nearly all of us know someone who has suffered from the horrible disease of cancer. Stampin' Up's new Strength and Hope stamp set is so beautiful that I just had to try it (and $2 from every set is donated to cancer research). I love the butterfly in particular and used the set to create some cards with a beautiful message of unity, hope, and strength. 

     I'll be offering this set of cards as a class on June 18th from 9 am to 12 pm. We'll create the set of 4 cards, get covered in glitter and ink, and create something beautiful. The cost will be $15 per set for the class. Please RSVP by Wednesday, June 15 so I can be sure to have enough materials on hand. The class will cap at 6, so get your spot now!

Supplies to bring:
Tape runner or double sided tape
Strong liquid glue such as Beacon or Zip Dry
Dimensionals or Pop Dots

If you don't have these items, I will have some available to use at the class.